Years ago I figured out what I like about camping and what I don’t like. I’ll pass on the whole tents and lack of plumbing experience. And even simple car camping can be ruined by one loud family of Santa Rosa trailer trash rolling into the campground late at night and disrupting an entire campground (you guessed correct if you think I am writing from experience).
But there is a lot I love about camping. There is the quiet of the early morning, starting the fire and getting some water boiling for tea. Sharing dinner with friends at night, feeling the darkness come quickly. That feeling when 7:30 p.m. already feels like 10 p.m. because you’re out in the dark in the woods. And the best part is all about the fire. Perhaps it is some primeval programming that has most of us mesmerized by that fire. The sound, the smell, the warmth — watching a good campfire beats anything you’ll ever find on TV.
Yesterday afternoon I was in a secluded, quiet clove below Marin Headlands on the shore of the Golden Gate. We stayed until about 10 o’clock, enjoyed dinner, birthday cupcakes, a full moonrise and of course we had a campfire. It was the things I love about camping. But no need for a tent because at the end of evening I was driven back across the Golden Gate Bridge in a swell little mini cooper convertible with the top down and heated seats on.